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Locally-shot film plays in Pablo

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PABLO — Bella Vista means beautiful view in Italian, and the scenery in this movie is stunning, shot in the Mission Valley, Ninepipe Wildlife Refuge and Missoula. 

The endless horizon and waking-up-after-winter colors play to the main character’s sense of aloneness.

Kathleen Wise plays Doris, the main character, an English teacher who moved to Missoula and taken a job teaching a group of immigrant students. She’s moved from a familiar place and has a temporary job and is exploring the area to feel more at home. 

The movie was shown at the Flathead Lake International Cinemafest in January and was screened again at the Johnny Arlee/Victor Charlo Theater on the Salish and Kootenai College Campus on April 30. 

Vera Brunner-Sung wrote and directed the film, and Sung, Jeri Rafter and Brooke Swaney produced it. 

Rafter is a Polson High School graduate and Swaney also grew up in the Mission Valley.

The script grew out of Sung’s own experience of being new to Missoula when she moved three years ago.

“I’m always interested in place and history,” Sung said. “It’s a touchstone for my work.”   Locals Sam Sandoval and Dave Winegart auditioned for and received parts in the movie. 

Sandoval said he’s an introvert so trying out was “far out of my comfort zone.” Sandoval only wears black clothing so the filmmakers had to borrow a jacket from Rafter’s uncle for Sandoval to wear in his scene at Ninepipe Wildlife Refuge. 

All three women are continuing their work in film.

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